Fire Earth

Mass die-offs from human impact and planetary response to the assault could occur by early 2016

Posts Tagged ‘Atmospheric carbon dioxide’

Sudden Surges in Atmospheric CO2: FIRE-EARTH Forecast

Posted by feww on July 23, 2013

Just when you thought it couldn’t possibly get much …

FIRE-EARTH Models show unprecedented surges in atmospheric CO2 concentrations starting 2014. The massive increases could be as much as 10 – 15 times any rises ever recorded.

To minimize abuse of this forecast by the usual culprits and dozens of newcomers, FIRE-EARTH won’t release further details at this time.

global co2 may2013
The graph shows recent monthly mean carbon dioxide globally averaged over marine surface sites. The Global Monitoring Division of NOAA/Earth System Research Laboratory has measured carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases for several decades at a globally distributed network of air sampling sites [Conway, 1994]. A global average is constructed by first fitting a smoothed curve as a function of time to each site, and then the smoothed value for each site is plotted as a function of latitude for 48 equal time steps per year. A global average is calculated from the latitude plot at each time step [Masarie, 1995]. Go here for more details on how global means are calculated.  Click for a comparison with recent trends in carbon dioxide at Mauna Loa, Hawaii, which has the longest continuous record of direct atmospheric CO2 measurements. Image and caption: ESRL/NOAA

Index of Human Impact on Nature (HIoN)

FIRE-EARTH - HION Index - 1 JULY 2013 - hsc2
Diagram shows the exponential growth of Human Impact on Nature (HION) between 1960  and July 2013. Source: FIRE-EARTH Real-Time Earth Models. Copyright: FIRE-EARTH Blog Authors.

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Posted in carbon emissions, carbon footprint, CO2, CO2 Emissions, CO2e | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

CO2 Tops 400ppm at Mauna Loa as Forecast

Posted by feww on May 11, 2013

Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Crosses 400PPM Milestone at Hawaii Observatory

On April 3, FIRE-EARTH forecast that the weekly average atmospheric CO2 at Mauna Loa could hit 400ppm by May 2013.

Last 5 days of daily average CO2

May 09 – 400.03  |  May 08 – 399.42  |  May 07 – 399.59  |  May 06 – 399.43 |  May 05 – 399.47  |

This is the first time the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in Hawaii tops 400ppm since measurement began in 1958, according to ESRL data.

The rise to 400ppm level of the atmospheric carbon dioxide represents yet another appalling milestone in the brief history of the homo ignarus.

The last time Earth’s atmosphere contained this much carbon dioxide was probably as many as 5 million years ago.

dwaco2mlo
CO2 Daily and Weekly Means at Mauna Loa.  The weekly mean (red bar) is simply the average of all days in the week for which a background value could be defined. The average standard deviation of day to day variability, calculated as the difference from the appropriate weekly mean, equals 0.38 ppm for the entire record. As a visual aid, the blue lines present monthly means of background data as they are presented under Recent Monthly CO2 at Mauna Loa. [Source: ESRL/NOAA]

Up-to-date weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa

  • Week of April 28, 2013: 399.58 ppm
  • Weekly value from 1 year ago: 396.81 ppm
  • Weekly value from 10 years ago: 378.50 ppm

Recent Global CO2

  • February 2013: 395.98 ppm
  • February 2012: 393.05 ppm

Recent Monthly Average Mauna Loa CO2

  • March 2013: 397.34 ppm
  • March 2012: 394.45 ppm

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Posted in carbon emissions, carbon footprint, Carbon Footprint of Your Dollar, carbon-intensive economy, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Update

Posted by feww on April 29, 2013

Weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa Observatory 

  • Week of April 21, 2013:     398.68 ppm
  • Weekly value from 1 year ago:     396.66 ppm
  • Weekly value from 10 years ago:     378.46 ppm

One Year of  CO2 daily and weekly means at Mauna Loa

co2- weekly mlo
The graph, updated weekly, shows as individual points daily mean CO2 up to and including the week (Sunday through Saturday) previous to today. The daily means are based on hours during which CO2 was likely representative of “background” conditions, defined as times when the measurement is representative of air at mid-altitudes over the Pacific Ocean. That air has had several days time or more to mix, smoothing out most of the CO2 variability encountered elsewhere, making the measurements representative of CO2 over hundreds of km or more. The selection process is designed to filter out any influence of nearby emissions, or removals, of CO2 such as caused by the vegetation on the island of Hawaii, and likewise emissions from the volcanic crater of Mauna Loa.  Source: ESRL/NOAA

Recent Mauna Loa CO2

  • March 2013:     397.34 ppm
  • March 2012:     394.45 ppm

Recent Global CO2

  • February 2013:     395.98 ppm
  • February 2012:     393.05 ppm

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Posted in carbon dioxide, carbon emissions, carbon footprint, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

400 PPM

Posted by feww on April 3, 2013

Weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa could hit 400ppm by May 2013: FIRE-EARTH

FIRE-EARTH projections show, based on the data provided by Mauna Loa Observatory, the average CO2 at Mauna Loa could climb to 400ppm in the next 6 weeks.

Up-to-date weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa

  • Week of March 24, 2013:     397.92 ppm
  • Weekly value from 1 year ago:     395.30 ppm
  • Weekly value from 10 years ago:     377.06 ppm

CO2-1y-dwm
CO2 Daily and Weekly Means at Mauna Loa [April 2012 - March 2013.]  The weekly mean (red bar) is simply the average of all days in the week for which a background value could be defined. The average standard deviation of day to day variability, calculated as the difference from the appropriate weekly mean, equals 0.38 ppm for the entire record. As a visual aid, the blue lines present monthly means of background data as they are presented under Recent Monthly CO2 at Mauna Loa. [Source: ESRL/NOAA]  

Recent Mauna Loa CO2

  • February 2013:     396.80 ppm
  • February 2012:     393.54 ppm

CO2-mm-mlo
The graph shows recent monthly mean carbon dioxide measured at Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii. [Source:  ESRL/NOAA]

CO2-MLO
Monthly mean atmospheric CO2 at Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii [Source:  ESRL/NOAA]

Recent Global CO2

  • January 2013:     395.09 ppm
  • January 2012:     392.44 ppm

CO2-gl
The graph shows recent monthly mean carbon dioxide globally averaged over marine surface sites. [Images sourced from ESRL/NOAA]

Historic

Time history of atmospheric carbon dioxide from 800,000 years ago until January, 2012.

long-lived ghg
Global average abundances of the major, well-mixed, long-lived greenhouse gases – carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, CFC-12 and CFC-11 – from the NOAA global air sampling network are plotted since the beginning of 1979. These gases account for about 96% of the direct radiative forcing by long-lived greenhouse gases since 1750. The remaining 4% is contributed by an assortment of 15 minor halogenated gases (see text). Methane data before 1983 are annual averages from Etheridge et al. (1998), adjusted to the NOAA calibration scale [Dlugokencky et al., 2005].  Source: ESRL/NOAA.  Click on image to view larger image. Click HERE for full size figure .

Posted in carbon emissions, carbon footprint, CO2, CO2e, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Global CO2 Emissions Up 2.5 Pct

Posted by feww on November 14, 2012

DISASTER CALENDAR SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,214 Days Left 

[November 14, 2012] Mass die-offs resulting from human impact and the planetary response to the anthropogenic assault could occur by early 2016.

  • SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,214 Days Left to the most Fateful Day in Human History
  • Symbolic countdown to the ‘worst day’ in human history began on May 15, 2011 ...

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Global Disasters/ Significant Events

Global 2011 CO2 emissions top 34 billion metric tons: IWR

Global CO2 emissions again reached a new record in 2011 rising 2.5 percent to 34 billion metric tons (bmt), compared with 33.2 bmt in 2010, as humanoids continued to consume ever-increasing amounts of fossil fuels, according to IWR, a renewable energy institute based in Germany.

  • Global CO2 emissions have risen by more than 50 percent in two decades.
  • In 1990,  some 22.7 bmt of carbon dioxide were emitted globally, IWR reported.
  • “China comes highest in the CO2 ranking of countries for 2011 with 8.9 bn metric tons of carbon dioxide (2010: 8.3 bn metric tons). That is 50 percent more than the USA with 6.0 bn metric tons (2010: 6.2 bn metric tons), which ranked second. At 1.8 bn metric tons (2010: 1.7 bn metric tons), India ranks third ahead of Russia with 1.67 bn metric tons (2010: 1.7 bn metric tons) and Japan with 1.3 bn metric tons (2010: 1.3 bn metric tons). Germany ranks 6th with 804 m metric tons (2010: 828 m metric tons). Among the top 10 largest emitters, the USA, Russia and Germany reduced their CO2 emissions in comparison to the previous year (all national results at http://www.cerina.org/de/co2-2011),” said IWR.


Monthly mean atmospheric carbon dioxide at Mauna Loa Observatory. Source: ESRL


Annual mean carbon dioxide growth rates for Mauna Loa. Decadal averages of the growth rate are plotted as horizontal lines for 1960 through 1969, 1970 through 1979, and so on. Source: ESRL

Global Disasters: Links, Forecasts and Background

GLOBAL WARNING

Posted in Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2012, global ghg emissions, global heating | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

CO2 Controls Earth’s Temperature

Posted by feww on October 15, 2010

Atmospheric CO2  acts as Earth’s thermostat: Study

A new modeling study shows that the planet’s temperature is controlled by the atmospheric CO2, NASA says.


Various atmospheric components differ in their contributions to the greenhouse effect, some through feedbacks and some through forcings. Without carbon dioxide and other non-condensing greenhouse gases, water vapor and clouds would be unable to provide the feedback mechanisms that amplify the greenhouse effect. Source: NASA GISS

Water vapor and clouds are the major contributors to Earth’s greenhouse effect, but a new atmosphere-ocean climate modeling study shows that the planet’s temperature ultimately depends on the atmospheric level of carbon dioxide.

The study, conducted by Andrew Lacis and colleagues at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York, examined the nature of Earth’s greenhouse effect and clarified the role that greenhouse gases and clouds play in absorbing outgoing infrared radiation. Notably, the team identified non-condensing greenhouse gases — such as carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, ozone, and chlorofluorocarbons — as providing the core support for the terrestrial greenhouse effect.

Without non-condensing greenhouse gases, water vapor and clouds would be unable to provide the feedback mechanisms that amplify the greenhouse effect. The study’s results will be published Friday, Oct. 15 in Science.

A companion study led by GISS co-author Gavin Schmidt that has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Geophysical Research shows that carbon dioxide accounts for about 20 percent of the greenhouse effect, water vapor and clouds together account for 75 percent, and minor gases and aerosols make up the remaining five percent. However, it is the 25 percent non-condensing greenhouse gas component, which includes carbon dioxide, that is the key factor in sustaining Earth’s greenhouse effect. By this accounting, carbon dioxide is responsible for 80 percent of the radiative forcing that sustains the Earth’s greenhouse effect.

The climate forcing experiment described in Science was simple in design and concept — all of the non-condensing greenhouse gases and aerosols were zeroed out, and the global climate model was run forward in time to see what would happen to the greenhouse effect. Without the sustaining support by the non-condensing greenhouse gases, Earth’s greenhouse effect collapsed as water vapor quickly precipitated from the atmosphere, plunging the model Earth into an icebound state — a clear demonstration that water vapor, although contributing 50 percent of the total greenhouse warming, acts as a feedback process, and as such, cannot by itself uphold the Earth’s greenhouse effect.

“Our climate modeling simulation should be viewed as an experiment in atmospheric physics, illustrating a cause and effect problem which allowed us to gain a better understanding of the working mechanics of Earth’s greenhouse effect, and enabled us to demonstrate the direct relationship that exists between rising atmospheric carbon dioxide and rising global temperature,” Lacis said.

The study ties in to the geologic record in which carbon dioxide levels have oscillated between approximately 180 parts per million during ice ages, and about 280 parts per million during warmer interglacial periods. To provide perspective to the nearly 1 C (1.8 F) increase in global temperature over the past century, it is estimated that the global mean temperature difference between the extremes of the ice age and interglacial periods is only about 5 C (9 F).

“When carbon dioxide increases, more water vapor returns to the atmosphere. This is what helped to melt the glaciers that once covered New York City,” said co-author David Rind, of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. “Today we are in uncharted territory as carbon dioxide approaches 390 parts per million in what has been referred to as the ‘superinterglacial.’”

“The bottom line is that atmospheric carbon dioxide acts as a thermostat in regulating the temperature of Earth,” Lacis said. “The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has fully documented the fact that industrial activity is responsible for the rapidly increasing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. It is not surprising then that global warming can be linked directly to the observed increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide and to human industrial activity in general.”

More Reading

by Kathryn Hansen, NASA’s Earth Science News

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Posted in anthropogenic CO2, feedbacks, forcings, Global Warming, greenhouse effect, superinterglacial | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Global temps could rise higher than expected

Posted by feww on December 21, 2009

Global temperatures could rise more than expected, new study shows

The kinds of increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide taking place today could have a significantly larger effect on global temperatures than previously thought, according to a new study led by Yale University geologists. Their findings appear December 20 in the advanced online edition of Nature Geoscience.

The team demonstrated that only a relatively small rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) was associated with a period of substantial warming in the mid- and early-Pliocene era, between three to five million years ago, when temperatures were approximately 3 to 4 degrees Celsius warmer than they are today.

Climate sensitivity—the mean global temperature response to a doubling of the concentration of atmospheric CO2—is estimated to be 1.5 to 4.5 degrees Celsius, using current models.

“These models take into account only relatively fast feedbacks, such as changes in atmospheric water vapor and the distribution of sea ice, clouds and aerosols,” said Mark Pagani, associate professor of geology and geophysics at Yale and lead author of the paper. “We wanted to look at Earth-system climate sensitivity, which includes the effects of long-term feedbacks such as change in continental ice-sheets, terrestrial ecosystems and greenhouse gases other than CO2.”

To do this, the team focused on the most recent episode of sustained global warmth with geography similar to today’s. Their reconstructed CO2 concentrations for the past five million years was used to estimate Earth-system climate sensitivity for a fully equilibrated state of the planet, and found that a relatively small rise in CO2 levels was associated with substantial global warming 4.5 million years ago. They also found that the global temperature was 2 to 3 degrees Celsius higher than today while CO2 levels were only between about 365 and 415 parts per million (ppm)—similar to today’s concentration of about 386 ppm.

“This work and other ancient climate reconstructions reveal that Earth’s climate is more sensitive to atmospheric carbon dioxide than is discussed in policy circles,” Pagani said. “Since there is no indication that the future will behave differently than the past, we should expect a couple of degrees of continued warming even if we held CO2 concentrations at the current level.”

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Other authors of the paper include Zhonghui Liu (Yale University and The University of Hong Kong), and Jonathan LaRiviere and Ana Christina Ravelo (University of California, Santa Cruz).

This study used samples provided by the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program and was funded by the National Science Foundation and the Yale Climate and Energy Institute.

Contact: Suzanne Taylor Muzzin
suzanne.taylormuzzin@yale.edu
Yale University

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Global warming likely to be amplified by slow changes to Earth systems

Researchers studying a period of high carbon dioxide levels and warm climate several million years ago have concluded that slow changes such as melting ice sheets amplified the initial warming caused by greenhouse gases.

The study, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, found that a relatively small rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels was associated with substantial global warming about 4.5 million years ago during the early Pliocene.

Coauthor Christina Ravelo, professor of ocean sciences at the University of California, Santa Cruz, said the study indicates that the sensitivity of Earth’s temperature to increases in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is greater than has been expected on the basis of climate models that only include rapid responses.

Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases trap heat in the atmosphere, leading to increased atmospheric and sea-surface temperatures. Relatively rapid feedbacks include changes in atmospheric water vapor, clouds, and sea ice. These short-term changes probably set in motion long-term changes in other factors–such as the extent of continental ice sheets, vegetation cover on land, and deep ocean circulation–that lead to additional global warming, Ravelo said.

“The implication is that these slow components of the Earth system, once they have time to change and equilibrate, may amplify the effects of small changes in the greenhouse gas composition of the atmosphere,” she said.

The researchers used sediment cores drilled from the seafloor at six different locations around the world to reconstruct carbon dioxide levels over the past five million years. They found that during the early and middle Pliocene (3 to 5 million years ago), when average global temperatures were at least 2 to 3 degrees Celsius warmer than today, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was similar to today’s levels, about 30 percent higher than preindustrial levels.

“Since there is no indication that the future will behave differently than the past, we should expect a couple of degrees of continued warming even if we held carbon dioxide concentrations at the current level,” said lead author Mark Pagani, an associate professor of geology and geophysics at Yale University.

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Contact: Tim Stephens
stephens@ucsc.edu
831-459-2495
University of California – Santa Cruz

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Posted in Climate Change, CO2, Geophysics, greenhouse gasses, Warming | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Is 350 ppm Safe? Hell, NO!

Posted by feww on June 24, 2008

Folks, don’t be fooled by the hype: 350 ppmv NOT safe!

  1. There is a 30-year time lag between the release of CO2e greenhouse gases to the atmosphere and the cumulative impact of heat-trapping mechanism taking effect.
  2. The positive feedback system whose impacts we are now witnessing started when the atmospheric CO2 concentration rose above the 330 ppmv in the mid 1970s.
  3. Any concentration level above the 330 ppm is clearly unsafe. To stabilize at levels below 330 ppm, we must aim for much lower levels of about 260-270 ppm.


Average air bubble CO2 concentration versus age in three ice cores taken close to the summit of Law Dome at 67�S, 113�E, around 1390 m elevation. Law Dome is near the Australian Antarctic station Casey. (Source)

Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations measured at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. The red curve shows the average monthly concentrations; blue curve is a moving 12 month average. GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 only as published by the Free Software Foundation. [Credit User Superm401via Wikimedia]

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